The Charlottesville 29

If there were just 29 restaurants in Charlottesville, what would be the ideal 29?

Category: Five Finds on Friday

Five Finds on Friday: Todd DeSorbo

Today’s Five Finds on Friday come from the Tony Bennett of college swimming, Todd DeSorbo. In just his fourth season at UVa, DeSorbo became the first coach ever to lead an ACC school to a swimming and diving national championship, when his women’s team took home the title last month. DeSorbo was subsequently named Women’s Team Coach of the Year. DeSorbo’s picks:

1) Burger with Bacon at Wayside Takeout & Catering. “This has become our staff’s go-to pre-Championship lucky lunch. The Monday prior to every ACC or NCAA Championship (including two weeks ago before our women won the National Title), we head to Wayside for a burger. If I had to pick a favorite food of mine, it’s for sure a burger, and Wayside does them right. Not to mention convenient to our place of work, the AFC pool.”

2) Piggie Smalls at Fry’s Spring Station. “If you’re sensing a theme in locations, it’s likely because when I first moved to Charlottesville I lived just behind Scott Stadium, and pretty much went from the house to the pool, and didn’t know much other than that there were several great food joints within walking distance. This turned out to be a family favorite and a staff favorite. We often have gathered here with all our swimming and diving staff and families to hang out. The pizza is phenomenal and the casual atmosphere is right up my alley.”

3) Black Coffee at Atlas Coffee. “Sorry to be sticking with the theme again here, but this was my go-to Thursday morning treat. It’s always been a goal of mine to be able to walk into a coffee shop (or bar) and be ‘regular’ enough that the barista knows what drink you want. I only went a few weeks in a row and they knew exactly what I wanted. I finally made it! Great coffee, great spot.”

4) Mother’s Day Roll at Tokyo Rose. “My family and I have eaten more sushi since the pandemic hit than probably in the previous five years. Likely because my 12 year-old son has decided he loves spicy tuna rolls, and Tokyo Rose’s are the best. Personally I love the Mother’s Day Roll. We haven’t been inside the restaurant in a year, but the takeout/delivery is just as good as dining in.”

5) Kimchi Pork Wrap at Beer Run. “This restaurant was introduced to us by the myth ‘The Charlottesville 29.’ This is a go-to for our family and friends. From family night out to champagne celebrations when our staff won our first ACC Title three years ago, Beer Run has been a staple in our eat out rotation. Great beer selection (almost too good), great food, and great casual environment. If you can’t tell, I like casual.”

Five Finds on Friday: Mary Bridget Kane

Today’s Five Finds on Friday come from reader Mary Bridget Kane. In celebration of the Culture of Takeout, Five Finds on Friday has been featuring readers selected at random in weekly drawings. Also part of the prize is a $100 restaurant gift certificate, like Kane’s certificate to Conmole. Kane’s picks:

1) Ham Biscuits from JM Stock Provisions. “Absolute perfection and my favorite way to start a weekend morning. Also everyone who works there is just fantastic.” 

2) Wessex from Greenwood Gourmet Grocery. “One of my favorite things about the Charlottesville area is that there are at least a half dozen truly fantastic sandwich places. After years of taste tests and an extensive Google Doc ranking system, I’ve concluded that Greenwood Grocery tops the list. It’s tough to choose just one from their menu but I keep coming back to the Wessex.” 

3) Turkey and Swiss on Sourdough from Take it Away. “Couldn’t pick just one Cville sandwich. My go to is turkey and Swiss on their homemade sourdough with arugula, pickles, roasted tomatoes and of course extra house dressing.” 

4) Shaved Salad at Oakhart Social. “Perfect combination of sweet, savory, crunchy. I think it’s the dates that make it.”

5) Grilled Cheese and Tomato Soup from C&O. “Best served with a dirty martini and some late night gossip. Makes me feel like I’ve traveled back in time.”

Five Finds on Friday: Debbie Ward-McKeon

Today’s Five Finds on Friday come from reader Debbie Ward-McKeon. In celebration of the Culture of Takeout, all autumn long Five Finds on Friday features readers selected at random in weekly drawings. Also part of the prize is a $100 restaurant gift certificate, like Ward-McKeon’s to Petit Pois. Check back Monday, November 23 to enter next week’s drawing, which includes a $100 gift certificate to Conmole. Ward-McKeon’s favorites from the Culture of Takeout:

1) Grilled Local Pork with Spatzle, Kale from Petit Pois. “Local pork straight from Autumn Olive Farms. Follow Petit Pois online to see daily menus. If you see coq au vin, head over for lunch, dinner, or take out. Check out Land by Hand. I ordered the Chef’s Share for my kitchen. So many choices.”

2) Chiles Toreados y Cebollitas from Al Carbon. “It’s an art to elevate the vegetables. A side dish of whole spicy jalapeños grilled with fat white onion bulbs still attached to their green tops. Take home two orders. They are just as delicious the next day. You know about the Al Carbon chicken. I order enough dark meat for two days.”

3) Peasant Beef & Pork Bolognese from Orzo Kitchen & Wine Bar. “Start with a Negroni made with Bombay gin, Dolin sweet vermouth, Campari, and an orange twist. Followed by angus beef & Duroc pork, pomodoro, chili flakes, and cream swirled into a Bolognese married to rigatoni. Finish with olive oil and rosemary cake with lemon curd and whipped cream. Select table side or curbside service. Sign up for Orzo emails which include the new Passport Menu.”

4) Melanzane Alla Parmigiana from Tavola. “I like Tavola’s courses served family style. Order takeout online and serve it up at home.

Antipasti misti for 2: a selection of artisanal cheeses and cured meats, olives, grilled artichokes and pickled sweet peppers.
Paste: Pappardelle Bolognese, a tender house made pasta, with a local beef and pork Bolognese sauce topped with grana padano.
Entrata: Melanzane alla parmigiana, layering of breaded eggplant, San Marzano tomatoes, ricotta, fresh mozzarella, and basil.”

5) Apple Brioche with Pastry Cream from Albemarle Baking Company. “Apple brioche is always first on my pastry takeout list. Currant scones, baked currant doughnuts, and cinnamon buns follow the brioche. Throw in an oatmeal raisin cookie which is unlike any oatmeal cookie I have ever eaten. Pack it all up and take it home.”

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